Today we’re going to talk about classes. Classes, in an RPG, are effectively archetypes We’ve brought them up before, notably in The Elements of Pokemon. What is an archetype, though? Google says…
- A very typical example of a certain person or thing.
- An original that has been imitated.
In RPGs, and video games in general, we’re used to archetypes following a basic outline. You’ve got all kinds of classes and sub-classes nowadays, paladin, rogue, monk, ranger, wizard, sorceror, warrior, just to name a few. However, we’re going to distill the essence of each class down to three basic body types, for the sake of this article, and for the blog itself.
The assassin possesses the slightest build of the three archetypes we’re going to discuss today. They are slim, lithe, fast, and subtle. They don’t bash you over the head with a giant mace while wearing platemail. Among their number we find rogues that sneak and stab; archers, fleet of foot and fletching; saboteurs, subtle in motive, smashing in execution. Perhaps you prefer a more modern variant, like the military sniper, the shadowy government spy agent, or the freerunning street thief playing at corporate espionage and government subversion. The assassin archetype favors skill and speed over brute strength and stubborn resolve. Though the name assassin obviously implies killing a target for varying motives, obviously the physical archetype is a lot broader than one might think at first glance.
The fighter is the middle ground between our other two archetypes, Assassin and Tank. Unlike the assassin, the fighter excels and perhaps revels in open combat. They favor a build that is heavy enough to take some pain, and fast enough to dish it back out again. While the assassin favors endurance, stamina, and speed, the fighter favors explosive force, combat conditioning, and resiliency. While the tank favors bulk, strength, and constitution, the fighter favors raw power, quick reflexes, and perhaps a little bit of bloodlust. Fighters utilize a variety of weapons, usually proficient in quite a few. Though they may specialize in one form of combat or another, they typically favor being well-rounded and able to face any challenge.
The tank is the largest, beefiest archetype of the three. With their size and strength, they can definitely dish out the pain, but just as importantly they can take it, too. The tank in a group is usually the one protective of their friends, taking the hits for them when they can, and scaring off the threats to their more fragile allies. Sometimes the tank’s resiliency comes from more than just their muscles, in the form of a good suit of armor. Mental toughness, however, is the unifying theme across the tank archetype, along with a stubborn willingness to outlast their foes both mentally and physically(and maybe chuck a car or two in the processs).
Become Who You Were Born to Be
Now we apply. Chances are, somewhere in those three archetypes lies you. The real you, that you feel inside, that you know you can be if you just try. You are the lithe, skillful assassin. You are the battle-born, fearless fighter. You are the dauntless, powerful, indomitable tank. Having an image to apply to your dreams seriously helps a lot. We have at least a few characters that are classic examples of every archetype linked above, so you have a place to start. If your favorite personal character isn’t listed yet, that’s fine, suggest them in the comments section below, and I promise we’ll get to him or her. In the meantime, however, pick your class and go.
Remember that we are who we choose to be. Every day, every hour, every minute that you have on this planet, you’re choosing who you want to be. Every second you have a chance to make a different choice. To work harder towards becoming your ideal. Making a big change in your life can be scary, but remember that big changes start with just small decisions. Picking a class doesn’t have to be just a thing you do in your favorite video games. Picking a class can be a new journey in your real-world life. I hope you make that choice, it’s a hell of a lot more fun than what “the other guys” are doing. Slip on your cloak, pick up your battleaxe, don your powersuit, and charge out to meet your future.
That’s all for now. I leave you with just this one question:
Who are you?
Dan “DaRatmastah” Wallace